You Know what they Say about Assumption?!


I’m a marketer and understand all the good reasons for tracking online behavior.  At 5o9, we’re all about the 3Ps – Performance, Privacy and Personalization.  Ahh… personalization, the holy grail of mobile marketing – but, marketers, beware.  Your good intentions may have unintended consequences, as you’ll learn about in this great TedTalk video from Eli Pariser – “What the Internet knows about you.”

Do your visitors, customers and yourselves a favor.  ASK before you track. ASK about interests and preferences.  If your content is valuable to me, I’ll share personal information in exchange for relevant ads and offers.  ASK before you apply filters to search or social interactions.  Don’t assume that your filters are the filters that your visitors want.  Before you interconnect your content with a large search or content provider, understand how they will process and filter your data and your customer requests.

Personalization is good.  When done right, you send less data and it’s more relevant.  Filtering without my permission is just a nice name for business-sponsored propaganda. Eli talks about Filter Bubbles in his TedTalk and new book.  Improper filtering can reinforce existing behaviors, decrease our exposure to new ideas and openness to change.  From a marketing perspective, it can backfire and limit prospective customers’ access to your new products, content or services.  Filtering can also be good – their is a lot of content to sort through on the Web.  Just be upfront about your filters and make them easy to turn on or off, or to change the settings.

The Web has given us the opportunity to have a two-way, real-time conversation with our customers.  Quit trying to shove everything down from the server and use this amazing technology platform, we call the Web, to start talking with your customers.

Posted in: Personalization, Who: User Information

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